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February 17 2018
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Royal Portraits From 19th-Century Iran Will Go on View at the Smithsonian's Freer|Sackler in Washington, DC

- Kings and noblemen of Iran's Qajar dynasty (1779-1925) commissioned self-portraits to convey their power and splendor. Such imagery proliferated as monumental oil paintings, photographs or as intimately scaled lacquer objects and uniquely combined traditional Persian artistic conventions with European modes of representation. "The Prince and the Shah: Royal Portraits from Qajar Iran" offers a rare glimpse into the development and dissemination of royal and aristocratic portraiture in the 19th century and early 20th century in Iran at a time when the country underwent major political, societal and cultural changes. - 2/17/18

PHOTOS: Zoroastrians celebrate annual feast of Sadeh in Yazd

- The Zoroastrians marked Sadeh, an ancient feast celebrating the creation of fire, in Yazd, Iran this week. The feast is marked on the tenth day of the eleventh month of Iranian calendar annually. Sadeh has been observed since the days when Zoroastrianism was the dominant religion in the powerful Persian empire. - 2/2/18

Symposium at Yale University explores impact of popular music on Iranian society

- "Popular Music & Society in Iran: New Directions," a two-day symposium examining the social and political significance of music in Iran, will take place at Yale University on Jan. 26-27. "The political and sociological study of music in contemporary Iran is a growing field, and this event is the first of its kind to bring together researchers and academics working on the topic," said symposium organizer Nahid Siamdoust, a postdoctoral associate and lecturer in Iranian studies at the Council on Middle East Studies at the MacMillan Center at Yale. - 1/24/18

Play brings trans people into public eye in Iran

- A play that spotlights transsexuals in Iran was staged during the 36th Fajr International Theater Festival in Tehran on Friday night. "The Blue Pink" was staged by a cast of nine actors helmed by the promising young director and writer Sanaz Bayan at Paliz Theater. - 1/22/18

German ambassador to Tehran enjoys 'Ab Gusht cooking lesson'

- Michael Klor-Berchtold, German ambassador to Tehran, posted a photo on his Twitter account on Thursday depicting him stirring Ab Gusht (Iranian stew made with lamb, chickpeas, white beans, onion, potatoes, and tomatoes, and dried lime) in a big pot. "Ab Gusht cooking lesson for me by real experts! Delicious!" he wrote on his twitter account. - 1/22/18

German quartet pays tribute to Iranian sailors at Fajr Music Festival in Tehran

- The fifth night of the 33rd Fajr International Music Festival was host to brilliant performances by the Klenke quartet from Germany. The program paid tribute to Iranian sailors and crew who lost their lives in a shipping incident off the Sea of China earlier this week. The program was held at Niavaran Cultural Center in Tehran. - 1/16/18

Tehran Art Auction 2018 sells out 120 mind-melting lots, signals flourishing market

- The 8th edition of Tehran Auction contemporary art sale broke a new record on Friday, January 12, signalling a flourishing market for contemporary Iranian art. The winter sale built on the success of its spring - 14.952 billion tomans to be exact, or over $3 million. Parsian Hotel was host to the 8th edition of Tehran Auction where the best of Iranian art ranging from established and emerging artists were introduced to art collectors and global audience. All the 120 modern and classical artworks sold out! - 1/14/18

Iran After Protests: Change Does Come

- In Iran today, over 20 people have been killed in the streets and two young men are dead from unknown causes after being detained in prison. An estimated 3,700 others have been arrested across the country, most of them under the age of 25. In Tehran the families of detainees are camping outside Evin prison awaiting news of their children. With such news in the headlines, it is hard not to be pessimistic about the protests that for a week rocked the country and riveted the world. But perspective matters. -Sanam Naraghi Anderlini - 1/11/18

Crowdfunding for publications of Samin Baghcheban's compositions

- March 2018 marks the 10th anniversary of Samin Baghcheban's demise in exile. On the occasion of the anniversary, the Baghcheban family is willing to publish a collection of Samin's vocal pieces which were composed in the 1950s and currently are not available to the public. - 1/7/18

Inspiring fashion designs add glamor to Tehran's Golestan Palace

- There is a common ground between the design elements involved in both architecture and fashion and many fashion designers around the world are inspired by architecture in their works. Now some young fashion designers in Iran display their designs inspired by the Golestan Palace at the venue during an exhibition. - 12/31/17

Farideh's long quest to find her biological parents continues

- Known as Eline Koning among her adopted family and friends in the Netherlands, and by Farideh in a children's home in Iran years ago, this 41-year-old Iranian-Dutch woman is still on a mission to find her biological parents. - 12/26/17

How Christmas is celebrated in Iran

- You will be surprised, or you won't, depending on how much you know of Iran, but Christmas is celebrated in Iran. It may be surprising because for a predominantly Muslim nation where Christians make up less than 1% of the country's population, you may think that all signs and traces of Christmas, from pine trees decorated with red, green and gold gift boxes placed behind shop windows to nativity scenes of the Virgin Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus, will be difficult, if not impossible, to spot on the streets. -Marjohn Sheikhi - 12/25/17

Behind Closed Curtains: Interior Design in Iran - Book Presentation by Lena Spath

- Author Lena Spath has captured the beauty, intricacy, and vibrancy of Iranian interior design in order to showcase its underrated style in her new book Behind Closed Curtains: Interior Design in Iran. "I want to challenge the narrative on Iran most media companies follow. This book is my way to bring the country's history and the stories of its citizens into the homes and the hands of more people." - 12/22/17

Hurry up! Yalda Night is right around the corner

- Children chasing each other; mothers setting out dried nuts, pomegranates and watermelons amongst other fine foodstuffs; and fathers watching a ball game amid all! Does this sound familiar? Well, this is a glimpse of the Yalda celebration in honor of the longest night of the year! - 12/20/17

Marivan celebrates becoming world city of handicrafts

- Marivan on Monday celebrated receiving an international status as the city of Kalash, a particular lightweight and breathable footwear. Head of World Crafts Council-Asia Pacific Region Ghada Hijavi along with clusters of Iranian cultural officials and artisans attended the event organized by the Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization, Mehr reported. - 12/19/17

Teen behind viral 'Angelina Jolie' plastic surgery photos reveals she lied

- A young woman who shocked the internet with her shocking appearance - which she claimed was the result of botched plastic surgery to look like Angelina Jolie - has finally come clean: it was a hoax. Sahar Tabar claimed to have gone under the knife more than 50 times in a bid to look like the smouldering A-lister, with results that looked more harrowing than Hollywood. -Independent - 12/7/17

Iran's 'Devoted Countryman' dies at 86

- Villager Riz Ali Khajavi who saved the lives of passengers of a train in 1962 when a landslide brought down rocks from overlooking mountain on a railroad, died at 86. Known as a national hero whose sacrifice story is being taught in Iranian schools, Riz Ali Khajavi was admitted to Imam Reza Hospital due to a severe pulmonary complication 20 days ago and died later on Saturday at 86. - 12/4/17

Iranian, Italian orchestras to take "Divine Martyrs" to Rome church

- The Tehran Symphony Orchestra choir and Italy's World Youth Orchestra will perform "Where Art Thou, Divine Martyrs" composed by Hushang Kamkar, at the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome on December 3. The joint concert is scheduled to be repeated in Tehran on December 6, Iran's Rudaki Foundation announced in a press release on Monday. - 11/28/17

Iranian teenage musicians to perform in Denmark festival

- A group of Iranian teenage musicians will perform at a music festival in Denmark later this month. The young musicians will perform at the NYT music festival and the University of Copenhagen on November 25 and 27. - 11/22/17

Iran before the 1979 revolution

- Fascinating photos show models in miniskirts and the fashionable female film stars who were later banned from movies when strict Islamic laws were imposed -Daily Mail, UK - 11/21/17

Iran Earthquake Appeal 2017

- Current reports state that 530 lives have been lost with the death toll expected to rise, over 7,000 people are injured, hundreds of villages have been destroyed, and 1,950 villages have been impacted as a result of the 7.3 magnitude Kermanshah earthquake, the most devastating in the world this year. PKCF is joining forces with Nikan/Mammut charity in Iran and Children of Persia in USA by forming a consortium that will raise and distribute funds to help those affected by this powerful earthquake - 11/16/17

Kermanshah quake: tragedy, altruism, hope

- The quake-hit city of Kermanshah is now the stage of inextricably mixed tragic, altruistic and hopeful scenes. All rescue and relief forces along with military personnel and volunteers have joined hands to help the victims. While tragic scenes of people mourning the loss of their beloved family members are heartbreaking the incessant work of relief forces to help people still raise hope. -Tehran Times - 11/16/17

Encouraging the Adoption of Disabled Children is a Good Idea That Needs Better Planning

- A recent pledge by an Iranian official to provide financial assistance to families that adopt children with disabilities is a good idea that requires thoroughly examining the underlying issues and improving existing services, a children's rights activist told the Center for Human Rights in Iran (CHRI). - 11/16/17

Anger Hits Boiling Point As Iranian Quake Survivors Left In The Cold

- Frustration is boiling over as earthquake survivors sleep outside in freezing temperatures, waiting for much-needed aid to reach devastated areas of Iran. "People here have nothing, nothing. No tents, no blankets, no food. There's nothing here. People are facing very tough conditions here. It's a crisis situation," one resident of Sarpol-e Zahab, a town in Iran's western Kermanshah Province that has been described as among the worst hit, told a journalist reporting from the scene. - 11/15/17

Photos: Ava is born in the midst of death and destruction caused by quake

- According to latest reports by Mehr News Agency, death toll for the devastating 7.3 magnitude earthquake on Iraq-Iran border has risen to 530, with 7460 reported as injured. But in the midst of the death and destruction, baby girl Ava was born on the second day after the quake in Sarpol-e Zahab, the Iranian city that suffered the most during the quake. Ava was born at the army field hospital setup in Sarpol-e Zahab, and she and brought cheers and smiles to everyone present at the tent. -by Ahmad Moeini Jam - 11/14/17

PHOTOS: Death And Destruction After Powerful Quake Near Iran-Iraq Border

- Rescue workers and desperate relatives dug through debris in a search for survivors after a powerful earthquake hit near the Iran-Iraq border. 395 Iranians were confirmed dead as of Monday afternoon. Over 6,650 others were also injured. Iran's Interior Ministry said on November 13 that most of the casualties were in Kermanshah Province, with residents reporting feeling the 7.3 magnitude quake throughout the region, from Turkey to Kuwait. - 11/13/17

Photos: Maskan-e Mehr government built affordable housing in Sarpol-e Zahab, Iran damaged severely in quake

- Users in Iranian social media are particularly angry about the news of damages and casualties from Sarpol-e Zahab. This town is home to a government built apartment complex known as "Maskan-e Mehr" that were constructed during Mahmoud Ahmadinejad presidency as an affordable housing project. These government housing complexes have been heavily damaged and angry users are asking questions about building safety standards. - 11/13/17

PHOTOS: Millions Of Shi'ite Pilgrims Throng Iraq's Karbala For Arbaeen Commemoration

- An estimated 14 million Shi'ite pilgrims thronged Iraq's holy city of Karbala on November 10 to mark the annual Arbaeen commemoration. Arbaeen is one of the biggest religious festivals on earth and marks the end of the 40-day mourning period for the 7th-century killing of Imam Hussein by the forces of the Caliph Yazid -- a formative event in Shi'ite Islam. The Arbaeen holiday is observed in Shi'ite communities worldwide, with large gatherings in Iran and southern Lebanon. - 11/11/17

Conference: Urban Planning and Civic Design in Modern Iran

- The main purpose and focus of the conference (held in London) will be on the evolution of urban planning and civic design in Iran from traditional to modern, with discussions and critical evaluations of the shortcomings, failures and successes of the process. Two major civic design projects of the period will also be presented and discussed: the 'Shahestān Pahlavi', and 'Urban Renewal of Mashhad City Centre'. - 11/10/17

UCLA receives $1 million for Elahe Omidyar Mir-Djalali postdoctoral fellowship in Iranian linguistics

- Adonation of $1 million from Roshan Cultural Heritage Institute will establish the Elahe Omidyar Mir-Djalali Postdoctoral Fellowship in Iranian Linguistics in the UCLA Department of Linguistics, one of the nation's top-ranked linguistics departments. - 11/7/17

"Isfahan, City of Polish Children" to go on stage in Tehran and Isfahan

- "Isfahan, City of Polish Children", a play centering on Polish people and children who took refuge in the central Iranian city of Isfahan during World War II, will go on stage in Isfahan and Tehran in late November. Written by Iranian dramatist Mohammad Charmshir, the play was performed previously by a cast of Polish and Iranian actors at the Grotowski Institute in the Polish city of Wroclaw during August 2015. - 11/1/17

Manolo Espaliu's Photo exhibit traces Spanish diplomat's mission to Iran in 17th century

- An exhibition of photos by Manolo Espaliu tracing the route to Iran followed by the Spanish diplomat Garcia de Silva Figueroa (1550-1624) during the 17th century opened Thursday at the Extremaduran and Latin American Museum of Contemporary Art (MEIAC) in Badajoz, Spain. - 10/30/17

Please Stop Using 'Woman in Chador Walks by Anti-US Mural' Stock Photo for Every Article About Iran

- The general mindlessness in choosing a stock photo is what makes them so pernicious. Editors reach for an image that captures the overall theme of the article while drawing the eye of distracted media consumers-typically as an afterthought, something that accents a piece rather than defines it. It's not an easy task, but it's one that, left unexamined, can become a form of propaganda independent of any written text. -Adam Johnson, FAIR.org - 10/24/17

The Many Flavors of Persian in Eurasia

- Is Tajik a dialect of Persian? Or a language in its own right? What differentiates it from varieties prevalent in Afghanistan and Iran? There is no easy answer to these questions because the very categories we use to think about language in Central Asia, and elsewhere, are insufficient. -James Pickett, LobeLog - 10/23/17

IRAN: The Historical Cradle of Civilization, the Origin of Human Diversity, and the Bastion of Humanistic Tolerance

- Ever since as early as a hundred thousand years ago when our Homo sapiens ancestors preceded by Homo helderbergenis along with our cousins the Neanderthals and Denisovans who had crossed the horn of Africa, the southwestern Asian's temperate Iranian plateau sandwiched between the Caspian Sea including the Caucuses, Alborz and the Himalayan Mountain ranges to the north, and the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman/Bushehr shores to the south-has remained the optimal cradle of human civilization. -Davood Rahni - 10/16/17

"Working Children" of Tehran celebrate National Children Day

- The State Welfare Organization held a ceremony in Tehran on Saturday for 500 working children to celebrate the National Children Day. Iran annually observes the National Children's Day on October 8 and the National Children's Week on October 7 to 13. - 10/9/17

Number of older persons in Iran grows 1.5-fold in a decade

- Census reports indicate that the number of persons, aged 60 years or older, has increased by 1.5-fold over the past decade (2006-2016) in Iran. In 2006, some 5.1 million people were 60 or older, but the number rose to 6.1 million in 2011 and to 7.4 million in 2016, ISNA reported. Currently, the country's total population stands at about 80 million, of which some 9.3 percent is 60 or older. - 10/3/17

Mehregan Conference & Celebration at University of California, Irvine

- Spirituality in Persian Poetry, A Lecture by Dr. Franklin Lewis. Iranian Female Writers Today, A Lecture by Dr. Nasrin Rahimieh. and Musical Performance By the SIBARG ENSEMBLE. Sunday October 8, 2017 - 10/2/17

Iran's Arrow: Don't miss this documentary about Iran's beloved Hillman Hunters

- We love cars that stay in overseas production for decades beyond what the designers intended; there's the Hindustan Ambassador (a 1956 Morris Oxford, built in India until 2014), the 1960 Ford Falcons built in Argentina through 1991, the Mexican-built Borgwards and many more. One of the all-time greatest -- maybe the all time-greatest -- of these cars is the Iran Khodro Paykan, essentially a 1966 Hillman Hunter, built in Iran well into our current century. -AutoWeek - 10/2/17

Wedding Ceremony of Iranian Acid Victim Goes Viral

- A young Iranian girl disfigured in an acid attack back in 2014 has gotten married, sparking widespread positive reactions in Iran's social media. Marzieh Ebrahimi, a young Iranian girl who fell victim to an acid attack years ago, has tied the knot. Her marriage has turned into the most high-profile one in the country, not because she is a celebrity or an artist, but because she is the victim of an acid attack. -IFP - 9/25/17

Females outnumber males by 13% in Iran's 2017 university admissions

- As the final results for the Iranian university entrance exam, also known as Konkur, was announced on Saturday, it was revealed that females outnumber males in gaining admission to higher education by 49,062, or 13 percent higher than males. Out of 378,706 participants who were admitted to the universities nationwide 213,884 (56.5%) are females and 164,822 (43.5%) are males - 9/17/17

World Heritage Volunteers help raise awareness of Persian qanats

- A cluster of World Heritage Volunteers has spotlighted essentials to conserve and promote Persian qanats, a UNESCO registered heritage that provides exceptional testimony to cultural traditions in desert areas with an arid climate. - 9/14/17

PHOTOS: Mariwan International Street Theater Festival in northwestern Iran

- The 12th Mariwan International Street Theater Festival has come to an end, with carnivals of Iranian and international artists marking the closing ceremony of the artistic event in the downtown of the Iranian Kurdish city. The four-day festival wrapped up on Tuesday in the northwestern city of Mariwan which is considered as Iran's capital of street theater. - 9/13/17

PHOTOS: Iranian nomads' wedding ceremony, symphony of colors

- Various ethnic groups or people of different regions of Iran have their own traditional weddings ceremonies. The Iranian nomads of Bakhtiari tribe celebrate their wedding ceremonies with clothes of diverse and vibrant colors. Photographer Farhad Safari has captured one such wedding for all to enjoy! - 9/12/17

Iran's 'city of mullahs' has a surprising side

- Before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, this city was pious and sedate. The late Iranian American poet Nader Naderpour once listed as its main features "women with scarves over their heads, men clad in clerical robes, a single golden dome, old storks in the sky, one spiritless garden, a handful of lonely trees." Qom became the bedrock of Iran's theocracy and remains one of the country's holiest places -Shashank Bengali and Ramin Mostaghim, Los Angeles Times - 9/8/17

Candlelight tribute held for Iranian schoolgirls killed in bus accident

- People lit up candles Friday night in sympathy with families of the schoolgirls who were killed as the bus carrying them rolled over early morning the same day. The bus with 45 female students onboard heading from the city of Bandar Abbas to the city of Darab, southern Iran, crashed at about 4 a.m. local time, killing 7 students, a teacher, and the driver's assistant. - 9/3/17

Tehran Tops Biggest Improvers In The Global Liveability Report 2017

- The city of Tehran is ranked first among the biggest improvers over the past years in terms of liveability, according to the Global Liveability Report 2017 published by the Intelligence Unit of The Economist. The concept of liveability is simple: it assesses which locations around the world provide the best or the worst living conditions. With 5 percent improvement in the past five years Tehran ranks 127 with overall rating of 50.8. - 8/29/17

PHOTOS: Ruin, village of warps and wefts

- Ruin, a village located in North Khorasan province, is home to women who still pursue the traditional arts and crafts of their ancestors, weaving, which began about 400 years ago and is one of the sources of income for the village. About 120 women weavers are currently actively engaged in this industry in Ruin. -Fatemeh Abedi - 8/23/17

How a Solar Eclipse Got Me Interested in Iran

- Unless you are a space geek like me, you might not be aware that the U.S. will experience a total solar eclipse next month -- the first one to occur over the continental U.S. in over 38 years! If you are in its path (or traveling to see it), I wish you clear skies! For me, a total solar eclipse elicits memories of my first trip to Iran in 1999 when I traveled there to view the last total solar eclipse of the millennium with a group organized by Search for Common Ground. -Stephanie Lester - 8/3/17

Celebration of Iranian Cinema Returns to UC Irvine

- The 2nd Annual CELEBRATION OF IRANIAN CINEMA in Orange County will be held at the University of California, Irvine August 25-27, 2017. - 8/2/17

TIRGAN 2017: The Arts and Culture Festival that Transcends borders and penetrates hearts

- Mesmerized by KamanChello playing, a duo string performance of the Persian Kamcheh and occidental Cello, the highly diverse audience comprised of not only Iranians from all walks of life and places, but also with the eminent presence of others including peace and justice loving mainstream Canadians, found themselves in twilight nostalgic and humanistic trance on earth and beyond. Tirgan 2017, the Iranian summer solstice festival ten years in the making in Toronto, had once again attracted 150,000 spectators which included many from the U.S. world down under, as well as from Europe and even Iran. -Davood N. Rahni - 8/1/17

Artist traces goats' place in history of Iranian culture

- The Paris-based Iranian painter Raheleh Roshandel intends to familiarize visitors to her new collection "Iranian Goats" with the place of the animal in the history of Iranian culture. Twenty works from the series that features goats in Iranian mythology, nomad life and some other fields were put on display in an exhibition at Tehran's Shokuh Gallery in mid-July. - 8/1/17

Iranian TV Personality Who Promoted Compulsory Islamic Dress Under Fire Over Photos

- A well-known Iranian television personality has been accused of hypocrisy after images of her in which she is not adhering to the country's Islamic dress code surfaced online. Presenter turned actress Azadeh Namdari has for years promoted compliance with the hijab, which in Iran refers to Islamic dress that covers the hair and body. In particular she has touted the wearing of the black chador, a garment that covers women from head to toe, leaving the face exposed. -Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE - 7/26/17

Iranians pushing boundaries in 'private sphere' debate

- Every now and then, Iranian media outlets are full of news and analysis about the boundaries between the "private" and "public" spheres. The most recent episode began July 7, when Mohammad Tarahomi, legal affairs traffic police deputy, announced that personal vehicles are not considered a "private sphere" and are thus subject to all public regulations, including mandatory veiling. -Mahmoud Pargoo, Al-Monitor - 7/23/17

Shahnameh audiobook, with introduction by Francis Ford Coppola, released

- An audio version of the Shahnameh, the epic masterpiece of Persian poet Ferdowsi, has been released in English with an introduction by U.S. filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola in the United States. American voice actor Marc Thompson has narrated the stories based on the latest translation by Ahmad Sadri published by Quantuck Lane Press in 2013, Kingorama, the U.S.-based publisher of "Shahnameh, the Epic of the Persian Kings", has announced. - 7/17/17

Touraj Daryaee: Uncovering the Splendor of Ancient Iran

- With the goal of harnessing the untapped potential of Iranian-Americans, and to build the capacity of the Iranian diaspora in effecting positive change in the U.S. and around the world, the Iranian Americans' Contributions Project (IACP) has launched a series of interviews that explore the personal and professional backgrounds of prominent Iranian-Americans who have made seminal contributions to their fields of endeavor. - Jahandad Memarian, Huffington Post - 7/5/17

Tehran Book Garden, a major center for publications, inaugurated

- Tehran Book Garden, covering an area of 110,000 square meters on Abbasabad Hills in the northeast of the city, opened during a special ceremony on Monday. The garden with 10 theaters and amphitheaters will provide a good opportunity for the families and children to study and dedicate some time for book reading. Permanent bookshops, an art gallery, shops offering cultural products, children's halls and workshops, as well as a robotics club, have also been included in the big project. - 7/5/17

30th International Children Film Festival kicks off in Isfahan, Iran

- The 30th International Film Festival for Children and Youth opened Thursday night in the city of Isfahan in central Iran. The international event brings audiences a packed seven days of films for children. The festival is will run from June 30 to July 6. More than 50 films have been accepted to the festival, and guests from 44 countries are expected to participate. - 6/30/17

French Iranologist Gilbert Lazard to receive Mahmud Afshar Award

- French linguist and Iranologist Gilbert Lazard will receive Iran's Mahmud Afshar Historical Literary Award for his lifetime endeavors and research on various Iranian languages and translations of classical Persian poetry. The award committee of the Mahmud Afshar Foundation selected Lazard for the 24th edition of the award this year. - 6/29/17

Manijeh Mir-Emadi, Iranian artist and founder of Tavoos Art Magazine, has departed this world

- Sorrowfully, Manijeh Mir-Emadi (Naseri) painter, the founder and editor in chief of the first bilingual art magazine of Iran and Iranian Art Publishing left this world on the early hours of Saturday June 10, 2017. - 6/12/17

Immigrant-Americans With Support From Over A Million People Worldwide Create A Monument To Humanity In Los Angeles

- The Farhang Foundation, a nonpolitical, nonreligious, not-for-profit Iranian-American cultural foundation, is proud to announce that The Freedom Sculpture: Freedom a Shared Dream, a monument honoring core American values of freedom, cultural diversity and unity, has raised more than $2.2 million, nearing the minimum goal of $2.5 million needed to complete the project. With over a million supporters from more than 50 countries following its progress on social media, the Freedom Sculpture has also become the most crowd-supported public monument gifted in U.S. history. - 6/11/17

Bay Area chef circles back to childhood with Persian breads

- Hanif Sadr grabs a baseball-size chunk of dough, flattening it into a circle. He's making kolaas, a yeast-raised Iranian flatbread of his youth, at his Berkeley home and test kitchen. The fingers on his right hand curl down, making it look like a bear claw. As his left hand deftly rotates the circle of dough, his bear claw flattens and stretches it. "This is called panje kesh, an Iranian technique to shape the dough with fingers," he tells me. -Leena Trivedi-Grenier, San Francisco Chronicle - 6/8/17

Iranian Artists, Activists Send Letter to President Rouhani Demanding Release of Imprisoned Music Producers

- Two Iranian artists will have been behind bars for a full year as of June 5, sentenced for their peaceful artistic activities. Today, artists and supporters of artistic freedom from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and the Middle East called for their release in an open letter sent by Freemuse and the Center for Human Rights in Iran to newly re-elected President Hassan Rouhani. - 6/2/17

AIC Partners with Educational Non-Profit ProjectExplorer.org to Create Film Series in Iran

- AIC is partnering with the award-winning educational non-profit, ProjectExplorer.org, to send a small film crew to Iran in Spring 2018 to produce a series of short, high-quality, educational videos about everyday life in Iran. - 6/1/17

The believers of Jewish religion exceed four billion worldwide!

- Judaism, the very original Arch of the Covenant for the three Abrahamic monotheistic religions of Jewish, Christianity and Islam, is now ubiquitously practiced, observed or the least affiliated in name with, by well over four billion inhabitants, i.e., more than two-third of the world population who identify themselves with any religion worldwide. -Rachel Eliasi Kohan - 5/31/17

Photos: The Smile Of Poverty

- Poverty has a bitter name. However, the people who live in the southern part of Kerman province of Iran have gotten used to it. There is so much poverty all over the place that its absence anywhere will look odd. The men and women of the villages are used to lack of basic amenities such as water, electricity, gas or sanitation. -Shahaboldin Ghayoumi - 5/30/17

Iran's Politics Color Ramadan Prayer Dispute

- A debate over the potential return of one of Iran's greatest classical singers for a prayer recitation has provided a fresh test of the hard-line domination of state TV nearly a decade after unrest that roiled the country's establishment. The performance of Rabbana by Mohammad Reza Shajarian was a Ramadan fixture for three decades before it was eliminated from programming after comments by Shajarian that were sympathetic to reformist critics of Iran's 2009 presidential election. - 5/30/17

Nine Iranian American Receive Ellis Island Medal of Honor

- On May 13th, 2017 nine highly accomplished Iranian Americans, including IA-100 member Mohammed Farzaneh, were awarded the 2017 Ellis Island Medal of Honor for outstanding achievement in their personal and professional lives, as well as their commitment to the preservation of their Iranian culture and heritage and noteworthy citizenship to the United States. - 5/27/17

Photos: Magnitude 5.7 Quake In Northeastern Iran Kills Two, Injures Hundreds

- A 5.7-magnitude earthquake that shook the northeastern province of North Khorasan on Saturday night claimed two lives and left more than 400 injured. The earthquake hit 3 cities and 97 villages of the province at 22:30 local time which was followed by 26 aftershocks. - 5/15/17

Iran: The Sanctions Hotel

- At the height of Iran's isolation, a fashion designer and an architect attempt to turn an old mud palace into a hotel. This film chronicles the five-year struggle of architect Amir Anoushfar and designer Shadi Parand to preserve one of Iran's largest historical buildings by turning it into an international boutique hotel. -Al Jazeera - 5/15/17

Iran's coal mine blast tragedy, day 4: 13 bodies still missing

- Searches continued into the fourth day to find the remaining 13 bodies trapped after a blast hit a coal mine in the northeastern province of Golestan on Wednesday. Following a blast in Zemestanyurt mine, 35 workers who were inside the mine at the time of explosion are believed to be dead while so far 22 bodies have been found. - 5/6/17

Tehran Book Fair opens with message from Italian president

- The 30th Tehran International Book Fair opened on Tuesday with a message from Sergio Mattarella, the president of Italy as the event's guest of honor. In his message, Mattarella said that he feels honored that his country is the special guest of the cultural event. - 5/3/17

PHOTOS: Magnificent tile-work at Mo'aven al-Molk shrine in Kermanshah, Iran

- The Takieh Mo'aven ol-Molk is Iran's finest Hosseinieh, a distinctively Shiite shrine where plays are acted out during the Islamic month of Moharram to commemorate the martyrdom in 680 of Imam Hossein at Karbala. Enter downstairs, through a courtyard and a domed central chamber decorated with grisly scenes from the Karbala battle. -Vahid Hoseini - 5/1/17

Tolerance historically practiced in Iran: Jewish lawmaker

- Not like in the Western world where it was belatedly introduced, tolerance has been practiced in the historically multicultural context of Iran, where the Jewish community have been living in peaceful coexistence with other populations for centuries, Siamak Moreh Sedgh, the Jewish community representative in Majlis (Parliament), says. - 4/26/17

"In order to Create, One must First Destroy": An Interview with Parvaneh Etemadi

- According to Parvaneh Etemadi, she has acquired Bahman Mohassess' taste and Jalal Al-Ahmad's courage. She is Frank. Yet, frankness is just one of her personality. She challenges the current form of knowledge and cognition and expresses far-fetched concepts with new modules, which provokes positive and negative reactions to her approach. Last year, her name appeared on the 11th list of 500 artists of the world together with four other Iranian artists, Farhad Moshiri, Reza Derakhshani, Ali Banisadr and Shirin Neshat - 4/25/17



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